Friday, 22 January 2016

A Little Life, by Hanya Yanagihara

An absolutely amazing book

I rarely write book reviews unless I come across an exceptional book that has really moved me and will be unforgettable.  "A Little Life" is such a book.  At 720 solid pages, it is hard to believe that this author managed to write this in only 18 months, but she did.  Despite it's many heart-breaking pages it is an uplifting work dealing with what I can only describe as very, very, very great love between life-long friends.  I first thought I would need two months to get through it but I couldn't put it down and it took me a week. Such are the privileges of being retired.  If we can't indulge in a lengthy read at this stage of our lives, then when can we? It is only in the central character's tortured mind that he has a 'little life'. For an onlooker, one can only be humbled to read about his. Even though one knows (certainly hopes) this is a work of fiction, it is a powerful, life-changing read. I remain extremely grateful that my own life has been ordinary and average.  I don't want to say more, the story is too complex. Try it. I believe it is the author's second book and as well-received as her first.


  1. It looks like an interesting read. I think most of us are fortunate to have "little lives" of average and ordinary. Anne Tyler's characters always come to mind. Odd little eccentrics that bumble through life somehow without a plot and often ruled by strange habit. It may not make interesting reading, but it does help to keep one's sanity.

  2. Well, you may not review often, but you have certainly produced a tease of a review here!

    1. It's hard to imagine that a 12/year-old little boy could have been prostituted by his care-givers - monks - to the tune of several hundred men since his 9th birthday. Also terribly beaten.... how could he ever be expected to be normal?